No. 76 g A^ July, 1964.
• v A a
RESOURCE MANAGEMENT REPORT
DEPARTMENT OF LANDS AND FORESTS
Hon. A. Kelso Roberts, Q.C. F. A. MacDougall
Minister- Deputy Minister
(These Reports are for Intro-Departmental Information
and Not for Publication)
No. 76 July, 1964.
RESOURCE MANAGEMENT REPORT
DEPARTMENT OF LANDS AND FORESTS
Fish and Wildlife Branch
Hon. A. Kelso Roberts, Q.C. F. A. MacDougall
Minister Deputy Minister
(These Reports are for Infra-Departmental Information
and Not for Publication)
Digitized by the Internet Archive
RESOURCE MANAGEMENT REPORT
TABLE OF CONTENTS
No. 76 July, 1964
Experimental Aerial Moose Hunting in the
Pikangikum Area of Northwestern Ontario, 1963.
- by A. E. Armstrong 1
Moose Browse Survey and Pellet Group Count
Kenora District, 1963. - by R. B. Hall 9
Pelee Island Pheasant Shoot - 1963.
- by L. J. Stock 19
Some Observations on a Sub-marginal
Agricultural Area and Factors Affecting Forest
Management in the Area. - by J, W. Keenan 25
The Wolf Problem in the Kearney Area 1963-64.
- by Carman W. Douglas 29
Report on the Commercial Bait-Fish Industry
for Lake Simcoe District in 1S63.
- by A. S. Holder 35
Review of the Boimechere River - Golden Lake
Walleye Tagging Program - 1963, Pembroke
District. - by J. F. Gardner 38
Some Current Fisheries Problems in Patricia
Lakes and Recommendations for Future Work of
the Inventory Programme, 1964,
- by C. A. Lewis 46
(THESE REPORTS ARE FOR INTRA- DEPARTMENTAL
INFORMATION AND NOT FOR PUBLICATION)
EXPERIMENTAL AERIAL MOOSE HUNTING IN THE
PIKANGIKUM AREA OF NORTHWESTERN ONTARIO
A. E. Armstrong
Sioux Lookout District
The experimental aerial noose hunting area that was
established in Kenora District in 1961 and expanded
in 1962 to take in part of Sioux Lookout and Fort
Frances Districts was changed to the Pikangikum area
in 1963. A total of 236 hunters took out permits to
hunt. From the 236 returns received, 22 did not make
use of the permit and 26 were unsuccessful. Hunter
success was an extremely high 87.0 per cent. Fifty-
eight per cent of the 188 moose killed were males.
The average flying time for each kill was 8.0 hours
and the average number of moose seen by each hunter
Prior to the 1960 moose hunting season there was
considerable talk of establishing a moose management area in a
portion of the Sioux Lockout and Kenora Districts.
The reasons for wishing to establish this moose management
area were twofold, to reduce some of the heavy hunting pressure in
the Red Lake Road area and to increase the kill in a heavy moose
density area where killing was presently almost nil.
It was decided that the area circumscribed by the
Manitoba Border the 7th base line, the 94th meridian and the 11th
base line would be a suitable area in which to have this hunt.
An attempt to change legislation governing the use of
aircraft for hunting failed and it was decided to abandon the
In 1961 strong opposition was shown by the Tourist
Outfitters in Ear Falls area and plans to proceed with the
experiment in the originally designated areas were abandoned.
i :~j. . .
However, an area east of Sioux Narrows, Lying entirely
within the Kenora District was selected and approval to proceed
with the experiment was received in September 1961 from Hon. J.W.
Spooner, then Minister of the Department of Lands &. Forests,
In 1962 this area was extended to include part of
Sioux Lookout District and a second area in Fort Frances was set
up for resident hunters only.
In 1963 both of these areas were discontinued and an
area similar to the one originally planned for Sioux Lookout
District was set up. The selected area was 18,760 square miles of
remote country bounded on the north by latitude 53 degrees .00
minutes, on the south by the 7th base line, on the west by the
boundary between Manitoba and Ontario. The eastern boundary com-
mences at the 7th base line and extends north on loogitude 94
degrees .00 minutes to the organized townships at Red Lake. From
slightly north of Red Lake the boundary again moved east to
latitude 92 degrees .00 minutes west, thence north to the inter-
section with the northern boundary. Because of the lengthy descrip-
tion of the eastern boundary it has not been given here in full
detail. A map of the entire spotting area showing location of kills
is given in (Appendix 1).
This year upon depositing his resident or non-resident
moose licence at one of the designated departmental offices, the
hunter was issued a licence in Form 1 to search for moose by the
use of aircraft,, (Appendix II).
The holder shall before the fifth day after the expiry
of the licence, surrender the licence to its issuer, shall produce
any moose taken by him for inspection by the issuer and shall complete
and file with the issuer a report in form 2. (Appendix II).
In 1962 several complaints were received concerning the
use of helicopters in spotting moose, therefore in 1963 use of
helicopters was prohibited.
Some complaints were also received in 1963 concerning
people shooting at moose from the aircraft while still flying.
None of these complaints could be acted upon because the parties in
question had left the area by the time the complaints were received
by our Department.
This year all of the 236 hunters who obtained permits
submitted returns to our Department. There was a marked decrease
in the number of hunters taking part in the hunt compared with
1962. Hunter success increased from 79.4 per cent to 87.0 per cent.
There were 26 hunters not successful and 22 hunters who though taking
out a permit did not use the privilege.
Results 1962 1963
Hunters failing to report
Pernits not used
Hunters reporting who participated in
No. of noose killed
Total noose reported seen
Av. nunber noose seen per hunter
Total flying tine
Av. flying tine per hunter
Av. flying tine per kill
The nunber of persons using the area dropped sharply
in 1963. This nay have been due to the distance of the United States
border fron the area, and also because of the lack of connercial
aircraft in the innediate vicinity in conparison to the previous
spotting area. The average nunber of noose seen per hunter rose
slightly fron 17.0 to 19.3. The average flying tine per hunter and
per kill increased slightly over the previous year.
Conposition of Kill
Total 110 315 188 100.
x Fron Thonpson 1961 and Charlton 1962.
Temporal Distribution of Moose Kill
% of Total
% of Total
Totals 188 100 445
Age Distribution in Moose Spotting Area
,9% (of total
of Aged Adults)
Origin of Aircraft
Fron the 214 pemits used it was determined that 118
hunters used Canadian owned aircraft, 96 hunters used American owned
aircraft. The majority of the Canadian aircraft would be commercial
whereas most of the American registered aircraft were likely privately
The effectiveness of aircraft in harvesting moose in remote
areas is clearly demonstrated by the 87 per cent success, for the
1963 season. However, the number of hunters taking out permits in
1963 dropped from a high of 421 the previous year to 236. A number
of factors may have contributed to this decline, among them being,
distance fron United States Border for American registered aircraft.
Most small commercial aircraft in the area were involved with outpost
canps and were not available to noose spotters.
Almost all of the hunting effort took place in the
southern half of the moose spotting area, with Trout Lake and
Sydney Lake being the most popular localities.
Some opposition to the spotting area as it now exists
was registered by camp operators in the Red Lake area, therefore,
a few changes in the boundary are being considered for next year to
eliminate these trouble spots.
(1) That the experiment be continued in this area in 1964.
(2) That minor changes be made in the boundary to eliminate
the opposition to the area being made by a few Red Lake
(3) That the present permit system be continued with maps
supplied similar to those used in 1963.
(4) That moose tagging be carried out in the experimental
area, to provide information on exploitation rate and
We would like to extend our thanks to all the department
personnel throughout the region who took part in the issuing of
permits and collection of questionnaire sheets.
Thompson, P. A. 1961 - A Report on Experimental Moose
Hunting Kenora District, 1961. Unpublished
Charlton, W. H. and R. B. Hall, 1962. Experimental Moose
Hunting in Northwestern Ontario. Unpublished
1 inch =16 miles
DEPARTMENT OF LANDS AND FORESTS
THE GAME AND FISH ACT, 1961-62
LICENCE TO SEARCH FOR MOOSE BY AIRCRAFT
Under The Game and Fish Act, 1961-62 and the regulations, and
subject to the limitations thereof, this licence is granted to:
To search for noose from an aircraft bearing registration No
or No and otherwise hunt the animals authorized to be
in the following area : %
This licence expires with the fourteenth day after its date of issue
Date of issue,
The Game and Fish Act, 1961-62
REPORT OF LICENSEE AUTHORIZED TO USE AIRCRAFT
TO SEARCH FOR MOOSE IN AN AREA DESIGNATED
UNDER THE REGULATIONS
Area Hunted. .Aircraft Registration
Dates of Hunting
Hours Flown (each day)
Number of Moose Seen (each day)
1. - .,
Date of Kill,
Location of Kill
Signature of Licensee
MOOSE BROWSE SURVEY AND PELLET GROUP COUNT
KENORA DISTRICT, 1963
R. B. Hall
On May 14, 1963 a moose browse survey and pellet
group count was carried out at Maynard Lake in the
Kenora District. The area surveyed was 1150 acres
or 1.8 square miles. The survey method was designed
according to instructions received from Head Office
A summary of the browse tally indicated a total
of 11,141 living stems per acre. From the pellet
group count, it was estimated that the winter popu-
lation was 16.3 moose per square mile.
Although the carrying capacity of the range appears
to be quite high, the degree of utilization and muti-
lation also appears to be fairly high. There is
evidence that the deer are competing with the moose
for the available browse on this area.
A moose browse survey was initiated in the Kenora District
in the spring of 1963, as outlined by the Southern Research Station
at Maple. This was the first attempt at moose range assessment
in this district.
The area chosen for the survey is near the boundaries
of the 1963 aerial moose spotting area. From previous aerial plot
surveys and track count surveys, this area indicated a high density
of moose. A preliminary flight over the area showed that it sup-
ported a good winter moose population and would lend itself to this
type of survey.
As part of the survey, a pellet group count was made for
the purpose of estimating the moose population per square mile.
description of Area
Maynard Lake, located 5C air miles north-east of Kenora,
is part of the English River chain. Until the recent completion
of a pulp and paper company road, the only easy access to this
area was by aircraft. It is now utilized to some degree by hunters
The area surveyed was 1150 acres on the east side of
The forest is of a mixed wood type, made up mainly of
white birch, trembling aspen, jack pine, black and white spruce.
There is a wide variation in the age classes of the stand, which
appears to be due, in part, to gradual over -maturing. This area
has not been affected by logging operations. The spruce budworm
attack of recent years has also served to open the stand and bring
about the growth of shrubs such as hazel, mountain maple and
juneberry. Much of the killed timber has blown down.
The area is regenerating to mainly white birch, aspen
The soil conditions are clay loam over clay with
granite outcrops on the higher ground. The topography is gently
rolling and well drained.
To facilitate carrying out the survey in one day, three
separate survey crews were used and lines run were arranged so
that they would be continuous, (see map) In future surveys, the
lines would be run parallel so that the area would be more system-
atically covered. This should eliminate the shortage of plots which
occurred in this survey.
The survey crews were as follows:
(1) A. Olsen and W. Hawley
(2) W. Charlton and D. Moon
(3) R. Hall and C. Lindstrom
Transportation to the area was supplied by Otter aircraft.
Six of the Kenora Fish and Wildlife staff took part in the survey.
Using the lake shore as one boundary, three two-man
teams ran a total of six cruise lines, (see attached map) Compass
and pacing were used to run the lines with a measured plot being
tallied every five chains. Plot size (13. 2 ' x 66 f ) and method of
tally was as per instructions. Seventy-nine pXots were tallied
which was 7 short of the desired 86. (64 x V^l.8 sq. mi. ■ 86)
Table I gives the results of the browse survey.
Population Estimate from Pellet Groups
The number of pellet groups on the 79 plots ranged from
to 10 with the total groups being 104. The average group per
plot was 104/79 ■ 1.32. The number of days of pellet deposition
was calculated as 200 from date of leaf fall. A daily deposition
rate of 13 was used.
1. Average number of pellet groups per acre:
Average per plot x 50
1.32 x 50 - 66.0
2. Moose days per square mile:
Pellet groups per acre x 640
Deposition rate (13)
66 x 640 «/n
3. Moose per square mile:
Moose days per square mile
Number of days of pellet deposition
3249 - r o -i
?on =16.3 moose per sq. mile
An attempt was made to establish 957o confidence limits
on the above figures with the result that negative values were
encountered. This indicates that there is a weakness in the
sampling method with too many zero plots occurring. It appears
as though large plots are required to reduce the number of zero
plots, thus increasing their significance.
Data on Pellet Count
Pellet groups per plot 0123456789 10 Total
No. of plots 33 21 10 10 - 3 - - 1 - 1 79
••• , , r .
It appears to be the nature of the terrain which accounted
for the large number of plots as well as the occasional high count.
Some of the plots fell in dense deadfall, while others fell directly
in clear spots between the deadfall.
From the summary of the browse survey the total of 11,141
living stems per acre indicates a good carrying capacity for this
range. More than half the available browse is made up of hazel,
which tallied 6,503 living stems per acre. Balsam and soft maple
are also available in good numbers. Mountain ash, the highly pre-
ferred moose food, was not found on any of the plots.
Although there is a good supply of browse available, the
population estimate of 16.3 moose per square mile is also high.
The degree of utilization for each species ranged from 19.4% to
66.6% and this also appears quite high. Balsam which made up 12.7%
of the available browse and is normally thought of as one of the
less desirable winter moose foods was 21.2% browsed.
Very few of the stems have been killed by browsing with
the exception of aspen (10.97o). This species appears to be
easier killed by browsing because of the nature of the stems.
Hazel, juneberry, soft maple and aspen show the highest degree of
mutilation, the highest being hazel at 35.67».
It was noted from casual observations along the cruise
lines that the area also supports a good population of deer. Many
pellet groups and fresh tracks were in evidence. It may be wise
to incorporate deer pellet group counts on future surveys to
determine the degree to which the deer and moose are competing for
the available browse.
There was no evidence of dead moose or deer on the plot
Little difficulty was encountered in carrying out the
survey as instructed.
It is felt that it would be an advantage in determining
the accuracy of the pellet group count if an aerial count of moose
was made during the winter months.
It appears impossible to separate deer browsing from
moose browsing, however, by incorporating a deer pellet group count
into further surveys it would help to assess the degree of competi-
tion between these two species.
I would like to thank the staff who ably assisted in the
collection of field data. Special thanks go to W. Charlton, Fish
and Wildlife Supervisor and M. Linklater for their assistance in
the preparation of this report. The preliminary statistical
analysis of the data was carried out by G. McGeachy and W. Charlton.
The significance of the data was discussed further with R. Boultbee.
Vozeh, G. E. and H. G. Gumming, 1960. A Moose Population Census and
Winter Browse Survey in Gogama District , Ontario.
Presented at the 22nd Midwest Fish and Wildlife
Conference, Toronto, December 5-7, 31 pp.
Scales 1" » 40 chn.
Maynard Lake Browse Survey - 1963
I r >
\ i T
per acre r
Maynard Lake Moose Browse Survey
Frequency Index (79 plots)
Occurrence (7 )
Living Stems per Acre by Species EL x 330
Living Stems per Acre
Per cent of Stems Browsed ( EB x
Per cent Browsed
Per cent of Stems Killed (EK
(EK + EL
Per cent Killed
Per cent of Stems which show Hedging ( EH 100 ^
Per cent Hedged
Per cent of Available Browse ( EL (single) ,« n )
(EL (total) x iUU )
Available Browse (%)
PELEE ISLAND PHEASANT SHOOT - 1963
L. J. Stock, Biologist,
Lake Erie District
During the two-day hunt, (October 31 and November 1,)
with a bag limit of nine cocks and two hens, 1,014
licencees bagged 8,492 pheasants, 6,545 cocks and
1,947 hens; 27.6 per cent bagged the limit of 11 birds.
Total birds bagged per hunter and hunter-hour were
9.03 and 0.85, respectively. The total estimated
crippling loss was 1,800 (hit and not retrieved) -
21.2 per cent of the bag. The total kill was estimated
at 10,292 birds. A total of 1,306 were reported seen
dead and not picked up. Compared to the previous
year the number of cocks bagged decreased by 2.6
per cent, the number of hens increased by 16.6 per
cent and the total bag increased 1.3 per cent. The
number of hunters increased by 153 (17.8%>) over 1962.
The post shoot population is estimated at 17,314 -
3,410 cocks and 13,904 hens. Other hunter success
and population data are presented.
Increase in total hunters
Number of hunters in
1st day 1,014
2nd day 787 = 77.6%
Bag limit for both days - ° cocks. 2 hens ■ 11 birds
Licenses Sold continued
Total hunters reporting
= 16. 76% (Sample size)
HUNTER SUCCESS FROM HUNTER QUESTIONNAIRES
Number of hunters reporting
Hours per hunter in the field
Birds bagged: Cocks
No shooting limit
Per cent of total
Bagged per hunter Cocks
Bagged per hunter-
HIT AND NOT RETRIEVED - Crippling Loss
Per cent of bag
l s 800
SEEN DEAD AND NOT
Per cent of bag
(total both days)
1.8 (of cocks bagged)
61.0 (of hens bagged)
• , I
id ■ -■"
TOTAL BAG ESTIMATE
1st dav Cocks
2nd day Cocks
TOTAL KILL ESTIMATE
BAG AND CRIPPLING LOSS - Two years compared
8 ? 492
Hit and not
Seen dead and
not picked up
POPULATION ESTIMATE -
Pre- shoot population (native)
(From July survey)
Post- shoot population (native)
Questionnaires were not mailed to the hunters prior to the
shoot as in 1962, but were distributed and collected on the Island.
With the total number of licencees increased 17.8 per cent
over the previous year the total bag of cocks was down slightly
(2.6%). Some reduction might have been expected when the pre-shoot
population estimate made in July was down some 22.5 per cent. However,
rain on the first day probably was a factor in reducing the bag. With
good weather on the first day the total kill would probably have
equalled or exceeded that of 1962.
Our estimates indicate that the population was not
overshot in either year, in fact the number of hens left after the
shoot is still over 3,000 higher than our target of a hen per acre.
The percentage of hunters shooting their quota declined
from 80 to 27.6 and the percentage of hunters in the field on the
second day increased from 51 per cent to 77.6 per cent. These
differences reflect the poorer hunting conditions on the first day
and the increase in the bag from eight to nine cocks.
There was a satisfying decrease in the crippling loss of
cocks. However, the reverse is true for the number of hens seen
dead and not picked up. This increased by 45 per cent and amounted
to 61 per cent of the hens bagged. Each hunter saw, on the average 1.17
hens left dead in the field.
For a detailed description of the supervision and
hunting conditions the reader is referred to the Report on the
shoot by Senior Conservation Officer K. J. Juck dated November 14th,
The shoot was supervised by Senior Conservation Officer
K. J. Juck and Conservation Officer 0. L. Mellick and their excellent
work is appreciated.
Further assistance was provided by Conservation Officer
R. W, Finch and Biologists D. R. Johnston and L. J. Stock.
Thanks also to the Customs Officers, the O.P.P. detachment
and all others who co-operated in supervising the hunt.
SOME OBSERVATIONS ON A SUB-MARGINAL AGRICULTURAL
AREA AND FACTORS AFFECTING FOREST MANAGEMENT IN THE AREA
J. W. Keenan
Timber Supervisor, Tweed District
Agricultural endeavour on the Pre-Cambrian Shield or on
thin soil over limestone seldom provides adequate
income. Thousands of acres have been abandoned or less
intensively farmed, especially since recent technology
has enhanced yield on good agricultural soil. Many of
the remaining "farmers" have to augment their income
from forestry and/or tourism. It is not usual that
there is enough affluence to provide for reasonable
management of private woodland. This rural population,
however, is an eager and skilled work force for silvi-
cultural and protection operations on nearby Crown land.
An estimated 80fo of the Tweed District is not suitable for
agricultural use under current economic conditions. The major
part of this area lies on the Canadian Shield, but it also
includes a substantial acreage of shallow soils over limestone
in the southern part of the district. All the 1,335,000 acres
of Crown land, and most of the 21,000 acres of agreement forest
land is located within this basically non-agricultural area.
However, despite its very low agricultural potential, a signif-
icant part of the area is still being farmed.
It is perhaps useful to briefly review the historical back-
ground of settlement in this area. The first settlers arrived
with the earliest logging operators 100 to 150 years ago.
Farms were established to supply the local logging camp market
as a more economical alternative to toting supplies from the
relatively distant agricultural areas. When the timber opera-
tors completed their major operations and moved on, most of the
settlers stayed on the land, mainly because of the lack of any
satisfactory alternative. Their numbers had been augmented
after the late l$50 T s by settlers moving up the newly established
colonization roads to take advantage of the free grant lands
offered as an incentive to would-be farmers. By 1900, however,
it had become obvious that this area was something less than an
agricultural paradise and the movement off the land was under
way. Depopulation and land abandonment was steady, but generally
unspectacular, until after the Second World War, when changing
agricultural technology and a more general awareness of "how the
other half lives" resulted in a much accelerated movement. As a
result, at least 150-200,000 acres of land have been abandoned,
and the process shows no signs of slowing down.
Nevertheless, a tenacious remnant population of farmers,
or part-time farmers, still remains scattered throughout the
area. The population density of the affected townships is less
than 10 persons per square mile according to the most recent
population statistics. The Ontario Agricultural College has
recently published a series of Background Studies for Resource
Development in the Tweed District. These studies were carried
out co-operatively by O.A.C., the Canada Dept. of Agriculture,
and our Department. Their study on sources and levels of income
for 466 open country residents show that the sources of income ,
in order of importance, were (a) jobs away from home — 45.5%;
(b) sale of farm products — 27.5%; (c) government transfer pay-
ments, i.e. family allowances, pensions, etc. — 21.6%. It is
significant that only a little over J of the income was earned
from farming, and the study group included residents of some
of the better agricultural areas. Forty-six percent of the
residents enumerated had a net household income of $2000 or
less. In a special study of low income families, the average
net income per family was found to be $1138 and the median
income was $1500. The median age of the male heads of 150
low income rural families was 50 years, and the average age
was 53 • 3 years. It is significant that only two of these men
were under 25 years of age while 10% were over 70 years. Those
engaged in full-time or part-time farming were found to have
been farming for an average of 29 years.
In summation, then, we are concerned with a low income
but relatively stable population comprised mainly of landowners
well past middle age with little evidence of interest in
succession to the land on the part of the younger element of
the population. These farmers are tied to their land by choice,
in some cases, but more frequently by circumstances. They
simply can T t afford to move off their land.
This, then, is the background against which we must consi-
der the practice, or lack of practice, as the case may be, of
timber management in this area.
Throughout the area which is not within normal commuting
distance of the more industrialized area, along the Lake Onta-
rio shoreline, forestry and recreation are important, and in
many cases the only off -farm sources of employment. Since
recreation is a factor only during a relatively short period,
forestry assumes a position of major importance. The large
number of sawmills scattered throughout the area recruit many of
their employees from the surrounding rural area during the summer
period. Logging, under which I include both woods operations and
the transport of forest products, offers a year-round employment
opportunity, and the increased scale of activity during the
fall and winter period coincides with the off-season of the
part-time farmer. The average daily wage of employees in
sawmilling and logging is low compared with most other areas —
probably averaging from $8 to $10 per day at best. This is
reflected in piecework rates, and we find that a normal rate
per cord of rough hardwood pulpwood stacked at roadside is from
$5 to $6 — and this applies to areas where the average cut per
acre is as low as 5 cords. Compare this with northern Ontario
where, in unionized areas, daily bushwork earnings of $30-$2+.0
per day are not uncommon and the average is probably well in
excess of $20. What effect does this have on forestry practice?
It all boils down to a much higher degree of tolerance of
applied timber management. Since there is often no real alter-
native to woods work, and the wage expectation is low, it is
possible to apply silvicultural techniques which would be unlikely
to find acceptance in more prosperous areas, It should be noted
here that there is another factor which favours this condition,
and that is the relatively strong competition for a limited
resource, The large number of sawmills compete strongly for the
fairly modest annual allowable cut of sawtimber, and are prepared
to accept a fairly large proportion of lower-grade timber. The
net result of these two influences is a very satisfactory level
of silvicultural practice and wood utilization. For instance,
in the Tweed District we marked almost 100$ of the pine and
spruce cut from Crown lands. We also mark at least 50% of all
tolerant hardwood sawtimber, as well as marking almost 100% of
the tolerant hardwood improvement cuts for hardwood pulpwood .
This latter product illustrates the point I am trying to make.
The price f.o.b. Trenton for hardwood pulpwood from areas in
excess of 100 miles from Trenton is $13.25 per cord. The haul-
ing cost for this distance is $10 per cord and the Crown dues
are 75p. This leaves $7-50 to pay for cutting, skidding, piling,
road building and the other costs associated with logging. And
yet the demand to produce hardwood pulpwood in this area far
exceeds the requirements of the Trenton mill. The hardwood
pulpwood market , which has now been in existence for about $
years, has been a major contributing factor to the application
of improved silvicultural techniques in hardwood stands.
By way of comparison, hardwood pulpwood has found very lim-
ited acceptance by operators in the Lindsay District. The forest
is much the same and the hauling distance not appreciably greater,
yet the annual cut of this product from Crown lands has increased
very little over the laso 5 or 6 years. This, I believe, has
been a matter of some concern to the Lindsay District staff. And
in discussions with them, it would appear that the living standards
of the rural population are just enough higher than those in the
Tweed District to make pulpwood cutting unacceptable.
It is my belief, therefore, that rather than resulting in a
sacrifice of silviculture, the employment of the low income
rural residents in woods operations is an important factor in
our application of relatively intensive silvicultural techniques.
It should also be noted that Department operations such as
planting, stand improvement, and insect and disease control bene-
fit from being able to attract a good quality of manpower at the
normal Department pay rates. This generally results in high
quality work at a very reasonable cost. On some of our stand
improvement projects we have virtually the same casual staff that
we started out with 6 or 7 years ago. These people have developed
a high degree of skill in their work, and on occasions when it
has become desirable to qui ckly expand the work program during
the winter months, we have a readily available group of foremen
The situation on Crown land, therefore, is very favourable.
On agreement forest lands, because they tend to be somewhat
closer to relatively more prosperous areas, the situation tends
to be somewhat less satisfactory, but still quite acceptable.
On private lands, the situation is generally unsatisfactory.
The economic and social conditions which, with adequate govern-
ment supervision and control, produce satisfactory timber manage-
ment on Crown lands, in the absence of control produce very
unsatisfactory conditions on most private forest lands. People
who tend to live "from hand to mouth" can hardly be expected to
show much concern for the future value of their timber lands.
This applies not only to their presently forested lands but also
to lands which should be reforested. Under the pressure of
immediate cash requirements, private woodlots are subjected to
successive highgrading operations which inevitably result in
almost worthless remnant stands. It is also the common practice
to carry out a merchantable clear-cut operation prior to the
sale of private forest land, since forest values are still
given little, if any, consideration in real estate appraisals.
This general situation is not universal, since there are land-
owners throughout the area with sufficient income from other
sources to permit them the luxury of some timber management
practices. It also has been our observation that many residents
that earn a satisfactory income from Crown land operations
carry over to their own lands the silvicultural practices learned
from their Crown land experience. However, these more encourag-
ing examples are in the minority, and the general level of
silviculture on private lands in the low-income area is distres-
sing to anyone interested in the practice of forestry. It
continues to be quite clear that under present conditions the
only landowners that can be expected to practice good forestry
in the Tweed District are those that do not depend on their
woodlots for essential revenue, and that can afford to carry
out silvicultural practices more as a hobby than a necessity.
Increased forest extension activity will have very little impact
on any landowners other than those in this latter luxury category,
If we wish to improve forest management on private lands in areas
of sub-marginal agriculture, it seems to me that the only way is
to acquire the land, either by Crown purchase or under the agree-
ment forest scheme. This talk was given to the foresters in
southern Ontario at Lindsay on March 17, 1964.
This paper is presented in response to the suggestion that there
is a sacrifice of silviculture to provide immediate social amen-
ities. It is not my intention to suggest that the low-income
levels prevalent throughout the area in question are a desirable
condition. I believe that forest management in this area would
benefit from permanent forest communities established at key
points throughout the area, perhaps at locations where the soils
are suitable for some agricultural use; and that the aim would
be to provide an opportunity for year-round forest employment at
a reasonable income level.
THE WOLF PROBLEM IN THE KEARNEY AREA
Carman 11, Douglas
Due to demand a wolf control program was undertaken
in the Burks Falls and Dorset Patrol Areas adjacent
to Algonquin Park during the winter of 1962-63.
Ground inspections 8 aerial surveys and the results
of snaring activities have shown that the area sup-
ports a relatively small population of wolves. The
project is being continued this winter (1963-64).
The training given to the Registered Trappers last
winter has considerably reduced the scale on which
the program is to be conducted this year.
Late in October of 1962 the staff of the Parry Sound
Forest District were asked to supervise a predator control project
in the area bordering Algonquin Park in the Burks Falls and Dorset
Two wolf trappers of proven ability, Andy Tyson and Frank
Stanplecoskie were hired to work with Conservation Officers Bob
Battrick and Bill Ellerington in their respective patrol areas.
The Conservation Officers were detailed to contact the Registered
Trappers and make all arrangements for the Government Trappers who
could accompany each Registered Trapper, in turn, on his trapline
area, train the nan in setting snares, assess the wolf density on
the traplines, provide snares as deemed necessary and aid in the
setting thereof. Each Registered Trapper would tend the snares on
his area and the Government Trappers would revisit each of the
Registered Trappers if and when time permitted.
On October 29 and 30, 1962 9 Douglas met with the
Registered Trappers at Kearney and Dwight, outlined this proposition
and received assurance of the co-operation of these men.
The approach of deer season and the regulations associated
with the setting of snares during that period, plus the fact that
most of the Registered Trappers were involved as guides or outfitters
during deer season, precluded an immediate start on the project.
On November 15, Douglas net with Battrick, Tyson, Ellering-
ton, Stanplecoskie and John Shannon at the Wildlife Research Station,
Algonquin Park, to discuss all phases of and make final arrangements
for this work.
Immediately after deer season, on Monday, November 19,
the Government Trappers began their work.
It was not until mid- January that these men completed
their initial visit to all traplines. A total of 22 Registered
Traplines plus 3 large areas held under Resident Trapping licences
were covered during this period . The area encompassed approximately
500 square miles and 780 snares, provided by the Department, were
set. To this may be added an undetermined number of snares owned
by the Registered Trappers.
The Government Trappers were asked to record the
relative density of wolves on the traplines, with the following
results, on the initial visit:
Wolves "absent"-2 (add 1 more for trapper who declared
this at the out set)
Some of the Registered Trappers, through illness, inability
to travel in heavy snow or the acceptance of other employment, did
not continue on their traplines throughout the winter.
From January through March, the Government Trappers
continued their work by revisiting the trapline areas and making
any necessary changes. During this period it was necessary that
Tyson be absent from the project for some tine on personal business.
By the third week in March, however, 18 of the 25 areas
had been revisited. Again the Government Trappers recorded their
impressions of wolf density as follows:
Wolves "absent" - 9 traplines
Wolves "scarce" - 9 traplines.
During the second visit, a further five snares were set
by Tyson for a total of 785.
It was the impression of both Government Trappers that
the matter of wolf density throughout this entire area had been
grossly over -exaggerated and that, in fact, these animals were
very uncommon throughout the area in question.
During this sane period, in conjunction with the Wolf
Research Program in the adjoining area of Algonquin Park,
Conservation Officer Ellerington and the Research personnel made
bi-weekly aerial surveys of the area under discussion to determine
wolf densities and travel routes. From data gathered on these
flights it appeared that the original wolf population in the area
was approximately 27 wolves and that by the time the flying had
to be halted, at least 10 of these had been taken by the trappers.
At no tine were any data gathered which would confirm the contention
that wolves were travelling from Algonquin Park in the large numbers
reported by sone persons. Of course it was noted that the range
of sone of the packs crossed the Park Boundary as would be expected
but this was not the case in every instance and certainly nothing
was learned which would lend support to a request that trappers
be permitted to extend their wolf - trapping activities into the
adjoining area in Algonquin Park.
During the project at least five snares were lost,
believed by the trappers to have captured wolves which had departed
taking snare and all with them.
If we consider these five snares as wolf captures then
the total wolf-kill during the entire project was approximately 20,
By no stretch of the imagination can 20 wolves, taken
by 25 trappers, with the help of two highly-experienced Government
Trappers using 705 Department snares and an undetermined number
of privately-owned snares on an area of 500 square miles be
considered as anything except a relatively small population of
The results of the snaring, plus the observations of the
Government Trappers and the data gathered on the aerial surveys
all point to the same conclusion. The wolf population in the area
studied by the project is relatively small.
Rod Stanfield has the data on the age and sex composition
of the wolves taken during this project for which it was possible
to secure the whole head if not the entire carcass.
Co-operation of the Registered Trappers during this
project was just what might be expected. Some worked whole-heartedly
and deserve high commendation, sone made a fair effort, some gave
only lip-service and at least one, who has been most-vociferous
throughout, before and since the project again showed his desire to
gain fame (or infamy) by "all- talk, no do" but in any event there
were no more than two wolves on or near his line during the initial
visit of our Trapper and none at all in his area during the second
visit so perhaps it doesn't really natter. What does, of course,
": ( •
natter is the fact that a few who seek fane or notoriety can
easily do so on a platfom of "pity~the-deer-dann the wolves-and-
down-with-the-Departnent." This is especially easy when the deer
have decreased due to severe winters, with consequent die-off and
reproductive decline and a serious decline in deer habitat. Such
a platfom is in no way hanpered by the fact that Civil Servants
are generally well-advised to stay "civil" in the face of such
canpaigns, since they will not necessarily find thenselves icnune
to public attack engendered by such a person regardless of that
person's lack of knowledge, disregard of co-operation and offers
of co-operation and regardless of the attacker's original intent
which night, after all have only been a desire for self-aggrandiz-
Without further consideration of the psychology which
engendered the project., I believe we have denonstrated the fact
that wolves are not as connon in the area as sone would have had
us believe. Perhaps, after all, the project did serve a really
useful purpose in that the Predator-Research Progran was thereby
able to continue without interruption or conplication in the adjoin-
ing area of Algonquin Park and was, thus in the final analysis, a
worthwhile undertaking and a true success.
I can hardly conclude this without remarking that in a
snail and very part- tine project with which I was concerned at
White River, sone years ago, two of our officers took nearly the
sane nunber of wolves although the area in which they worked, the
equipnent which they used, the cost involved and the tine devoted
to it was so restricted as to appear as nothing in the face of the
venture reported on here. This, of course, just points up again
relative scarcity of wolves in the 500 square niles we have studied.
It is unfortunate that the question of predators has been ever thus
regardless of the century or the country involved. Too bad that
every child reads "Little Red Riding Hood" and the "Three Little
On December 15. 1963, 1 attended a neeting of the Parry
Sound - Muskoka Deer Hunt Canp Association in Huntsville. This
was the neeting at which so nany wolf-criers had so nuch sport at
the Department 5 s expense only the year before.
Since that tine I have worked a bit with this group and
have co-operated with then in their venture, providing then with
the records of nanes and addresses of deer-canp owners and working
for a while on one of their connittees until soneone decided that
this was a bad position in which to place a Civil Servant and I was
relieved of ny obligation in this regard.
At their latest meeting I was the sole representative of
the Department, the meeting was very orderly and well-conducted, I
was well received and accorded every courtesy by this group of at
least 200 hunters, the wolf question was not raised at all, there
was a sincere request for a continuation of our deer-habitat
assessment and improvement programs and the Department definitely
came out on top. Certainly this is in sharp contrast to the
previous meeting when strange Lands and Forests uniforms and
personnel were conspicuous throughout the room, where philosophical
dissertations found no philosophers to accept the verbiage and the
Department in general was "shot down in flames". I look forward
to the continued good-will of this group which can certainly help
or hinder, through public pressure, our efforts at game management.
We have only so many officers with which to conduct management
surveys. Any spur-of-the-moment projects which divert our limited
manpower detracts from these surveys and the ensuing management
projects. In all fairness we cannot divert men from one area to
support other areas except to the detriment of these other locations.
If through pressure we are forced to digress in an area then we
have no alternative than to write-off for the present the surveys
and projects which would otherwise be undertaken. Our staff is
simply too small to permit the flexibility which would allow such
I believe that the hunters in the Kearney area and
adjoining areas are now ready to accept deer-yard management as
the answer to the problem and they ifish to see this work go forward.
As often as time permits, our conservation officers survey
deer yarding areas and submit reports for their management. Within
the limits of our staff we confirm these surveys and arrange for
the conduct of management projects.
Apparently a "howlalot" found sympathy for his pleas that
the wolf was still the 1964 culprit in part of this study area and
we were asked, again, to conduct the project. The request filtered
down to us much too late for a full-blown effort to be worthily
organized. However, it was agreed that we would accomplish our
purpose if the Burks Falls and Dorset Officers, (Bob Battrick and
Bill Ellerington) were to contact each of the Registered Trappers
with whom we worked last year and arrange for Gordon Car swell,
Predator Control Officer, to give such aid and assistance as is
deemed necessary to have the project continue this year. Most of
the trappers have or have been reissued with the snares set for
them last year and it is apparent that the more interested trappers
are putting them out. This project was layed out on January 3rd and
most of the trappers in the Dorset Patrol Area have been contacted
by Car swell and Ellerington. Contact with the trappers in the Burks
Falls Patrol gets underway this week. A preliminary report will soon
be issued on this 1964 work.
Of course, this project, the worthiness of which nay be
adjudged frco the foregoing is going to occupy the tine of three
officers who still have their regular duties to perform. (It should
be noted that Car swell, our Predator Control Officer, still has his
own Patrol Area to administer as a regular Conservation Officer).
None of these officers hesitate to work overtime for hours or days
as circumstances warrant. However, there are only so nany hours
or days available and those spent on one project are lost to any
other. We cannot, therefore, expect to proceed with deer yard
surveys and projects if the nen are diverted to other work. We
have no others to fill-in for then while they engage in other
projects. The outcone is obvious. It is unfortunate that worthy
projects nust be set aside for those less commendable. I believe
that our deer hunters are ready to accept deer yard management. If
we are not compelled to engage in too many other pursuits I believe
that we can give it to them. Support in this is necessary at
every level. I believe we have the support of the vast majority
of the private individuals concerned.
I wish to express my sincere thanks for the co-operation
of Conservation Officers Bob Battrick and Bill Ellerington, Govern-
ment Trappers Andy Tyson and Frank Stanplecoskie, John Shannon of
the Maple Station and others in the Research Branch, all of whom
did a great deal more than I have covered in the report, to further
this Wolf Control project. I would indeed be remiss if I did not
also express my gratitude to those trappers whose co-operation made
this project possible and whose hospitality engendered a spirit
of goodwill not always possible in rather adverse circumstances.
Last, but certainly not least, my thanks to pilots "Yorky" Fiskar
and Tommy Cooke whose interest in the aerial surveys made them a
success. If I have unintentionally omitted anyone the : ' thanks to
REPORT ON THE COMMERCIAL BAIT-FISH INDUSTRY
FOR LAKE SIMCCE DISTRICT IN 1963
A. S. Holder
A report of the licences issued, harvest, gross
revenue, investment and employment in the bait- fish
industry is given. On the basis of a 51 per cent
return of questionnaires, total catch is estimated
as 174,062 dozen live minnows and 30,478 pounds of
preserved minnows. Total revenue is estimated as
$79,457.00. Comparisons drawn with last year show
an increase in both catch and revenue.
The bait-fish industry in the Lake Simcoe District in
1963 was evaluated by means of the same questionnaire as used in
1962. (See 1962 report for sample). The shortcomings of this
questionnaire are well understood, but it was felt that use of
the same form would result in better completion by the fishermen.
Some improvement was noted this year.
One problem encountered this year has been the difficulty
of getting returns in before the March deadline. Operators in our
District were asked to fill in the return by January 31; however,
in practice most filed a return when applying for their new licence.
As yet, many have not made application for their 1964 licence.
The returns received, on which this report is based,
constitute only 51 per cent of the total harvesting licences
issued. Those holding only Dealers' licences were not questioned.
In the following sections adjustments have been made in an attempt
to estimate returns for the total industry.
Number of Licences Issued
A total of 169 bait-fish harvesting licences (seine, dip
and trap) were issued in 1963 throughout the District. This is a
considerable increase over 1962 when 138 were sold. The number of
Preserving licences also increased. Slightly fewer Dealers 1 licences
' ; :_ _f..'
• '• " . f - -
c.':J 'V; y'.' s.^
Details of 1963 licence sales are given as follows:
Type New Renewal Total
Seine 28 81 109
Dip 16 37 53
Trap 1 (4 traps) 6 (32 traps) 7 (36 traps)
Preserving 19 55 74
Dealer 17 40 57
Bait-fish Harvest a nd Sales Value
As in past years the fishermen were asked to report
catch under the headings of chub, sucker, shiner and other for
live sale., and under preserved minnows. Results for 1963 show
an estimated total catch for the District of 174,064 dozen of
live minnows and 30 , 478 pounds of preserved or salted minnows
with a total sales value of $79^459. GO. This compares to estimates
made of the 1962 catch of 161,423 dozen live minnows and 24,045
pounds of preserved minnows with a total sales value of $55,680.00.
Details of the 1963 operations are as follows:
Species Reported Estimated Reported Estimated Total Mean
Catch Total Catch Sales Sales Value Price
$ 4,536.00 - 65c/doz.
9,388.00 - 52C
17,324.00 - 28c "
1,452.00 - 39c
Sub total B?j6C7 n 174,062 doz, $32,700.00 $ 63,519.00
Shiner 15,690 pounds 30,478 lbs, $ 8,205.00 $ 15,938.00 52c lb.
Total *478,842 doz, $79,457.00
•'•Obtained by converting preserved minnows in pounds to dozens by use
of the conversion factor of 10 dozen per pound.
In vestment in Equipnent
The questionnaire in 1963 as in the previous year asked
for a lump- sun estimate of investment in equipment. Individuals were
cautioned to only include boats and trucks if 50 per cent or more of
their use was in the bait-fish industry. Average investment listed
in 1963 was $390,00 as compared to $281 o 00 in 1962. Details of
the reported investment are as follows:
Number Reporting Reported Investment Estimated Total Mean Range
__ „__ . Investment ___. „
68 $26,529.00 $54,013.00 $390.00 $10-4000
The employment section of the questionnaire was rather
poorly completed; however, as in previous years, it is plain that
the industry provides only a limited amount of part-time employment
(sixty- five operators completed this section) three did not work
themselves, while the remaining 62 reported that they spent an
average of n:lne days each in the business. In addition 56 men were
hired for an average period of 37 days. No attempt was made to
adjust this figure to represent the entire industry in the District.
D iscuss ion
Three years of collecting data have pointed out the
difficulty of obtaining accurate results by means of voluntary
returns o In particular, unless a deadline date is set by regulation
for filing these returns ? it will not be possible to report on the
industry by March Our feelings on bait- fish licencing and returns
have been submitted in a Regional Report on Bait Fish and need not
be detailed here.
REVIEW OF THE BONNECHERE RIVER - GOLDEN LAKE
WALLEYE TAGGING PROGRAM - 1963
J c F. Gardner
A tagging prcgran in April s 1963 was designed to
study the walleyes utilizing the Tranore dan spawning
bed on the Bonnechere River Efforts were nade to
obtain data on walleye distribution, spawning
population estinates 3 physical condition of the fish
and the degree of angler exploitation. Sane doubt
was expressed that the Tranore spawning population
contributes to the total walleye population of Golden
Lake. Further work Is needed over the next two or
three years in order to prove or disprove this con-
tention, Reeennendaticns are given for future nanage-
In April of 1963, a yellow walleye (Stizostedion vitreun )
tagging progran was begun at the Tranore dan spawning bed on the
Bonnechere River between Golden Lake and Round Lake. For sone
years this has been a well known spawning site for adult walleyes
ascending the Bonnechere River frco Golden Lake during the spring
(a) to study the distribution of walleyes in Golden Lake upon
their return froa the Tranore dan spawning bed,
(b) to utilize the percentage of tag returns as a neans of
neasuring angler exploitation on Golden Lake.
(c) to attenpt to estinate the total nunber of walleyes utilizing
the Tranore dan spawning area,
(d) to allow an opportunity to exanine the physical condition of
the fish and collect sex and length data. Scale sanples were
not taken since it was thought this phase could nore easily be
acconplished during the sunoer creel census on Golden Lake.
Due to the difficulties encountered in 1962 with regard to
flooding;, an arrangement was nade to withhold the closing of the
Tramore dan until spring flood waters had crested and begun to
abate. The dan was closed off on April 22 and the first trap set
nade on April 23c Previous to this, close watch had been kept
on the river for signs of a build-up in spawning walleyes* An eight
foot trap net was used with a 100 ft c lead attached to one side and
the set was nade facing downstream in the narrows below the spawning
To facilitate the operation and nininize handling of the
walleyes, tagging was conducted on a sand bar adjacent to the trap
where the water was about 12" in depth*
A special cable about four feet high had been constructed
with a trough 36" x 10" set into its top to hold the fish prior to
tagging o A water col':, ion of the anaesthetic M.S. 222 was placed in
the trough to a depth of 3-4" into which the walleyes were placed
two at a tine for a period of 30 - 40 seconds . Upon renoval fron
the trap net the walleyes were retained in a welded wire holding
pen prior to anaesthetizing. Common white suckers caught in the
operation were disposed of. The tag enployed was the yellow
plastic disc type with Lands and Forests on one side and a serial
number en the other. It was attached by neans of nylon gut to that
portion of the dorsum directly between the anterior and posterior
dorsal fin of each walleye. The fish were then placed in a second
retaining cage until completely recovered fron the anaesthetic,
and then released into the river. Data on each fish including the
tag serial number, fcrk and total length and sex of the fish was
recorded en a tally sheet c The whole operation was carried out by
the writer and one assistant*
Trap Netting Re s 'c
•> 2 f
It seemed that the peak of the run had definitely passed
when trap-netting was begun since the successive catches on each of
the six trap -nights decreased rapidly. The firs" set captured 80
walleyes and the catch showed a decrease each night until only four
were taken on the sixth night • The initial catch of 80 walleyes
included only 19 females, most of which were shedding eggs freely.
It is felt that the swift water in the river could have concealed
the spawning fish fron the observers with the result that the peak
of the run was passed when trap netting commenced „ A total of 212
walleyes were tagged and released and this total was comprised of
165 males and 47 females, An additional two trap sets made at the
mouth of the Bonnechere River where it empties into Golden Lake were
unsuccessful in capturing walleyes returning to the lake.
Coarse Fish Re moval
While the walleye program was in progress, all coarse
fish taken were removed from the river. There appeared to have been
a significant decrease in the nunber of Conoon White Suckers
( Catostomus commersoni i) present when the total of 542 taken this
year is compared with the total of approximately 5,000 taken in
the same area in an equal number of trap-nights in 1962 „ However,
it should be noted that the bulk of the 1962 sucker catch was made
during the first week of May when they were at the peak of spawning
A small number of Lake Whitef ish ( Cor eg onus clupeaformis )
ranging in size from 4 to 6 lbs. were taken during the walleye
operation. These were examined for indications of Triaenophorus
with negative results,, The stomachs of the whitef ish were also
examined, and a high percentage were found to contain copious
quantities of walleye spawn .
Once again in 1963 the problem of flood waters was
paramount in curtailing the ualleye spawning study at Tramore. On
May 4, the stop logs were removed from the dam since the water had
built up more rapidly than expected, resulting in flood conditions
on Round Lake. This was the second consecutive year that such
conditions had existed on this spawning bed. During April of 1962
when this study was originally attempted operations had to be
curtailed after tagging only 39 walleyes because of the rapid
build-up of flood waters .
1963 Tag Returns
In order to solicit as many tag returns as possible from
anglers a notice was made up and stencilled copies were posted in
Golden Lake village, Egaaville, Killaloe, sevsral restaurants and
all the tourist establishments around Golden Lake and area. These
notices depicted the position of the tag on the fish as well as the
type of tag used The purpose of the project was outlined in point
form and a request was made for all anglers catching a tagged fish
to return the tag along with the date of capture and location in the
lake of the capture „ Radio and T.V e facilities were also utilized
to advertize the project.
Of the 212 walleyes tagged 47 have been returned to date
indicating a quite high 21.2 per cent return. A total of 21 returns
was made on fish caught in the Bonnechere River between the tagging
site at Tramore and Deacon area (see Fig, 1). The remaining 26
returns were from walleyes taken at a number of scattered locations
in Golden Lake itself. Fig. 1 indicates the locations of tag returns
from Golden Lake.
In addition four walleyes tagged in 1962 were taken by
anglers during the early season in the Bonnechere River and another
was taken in the trap net in exactly the sane location at which it
had been tagged in 1962. It is worthy of note that a fifth walleye
tagged in f 62 was taken on opening day 1963 by an angler at the
north end of Round Lake above the Tranore dan. It would seen that
this particular fish passed through the dan in early spring when it
was open and continued directly across the four nile plus expanse
of water to the point where the Bonnechere enters Round Lake.
Tranore Spawning Population Estinate
In an effort to obtain an estinate of the nunber of
walleyes using the Tranore spawning bed the sanple of fish checked
during the initial phase of the Golden Lake creel census was utilized.
Fron Phase I Golden Lake Creel Census, (see Round Lake-Golden Lake
Creel Census Report - 1963) 112 walleyes were actually checked and
18 tag returns were received fron the anglers utilizing the
Bonnechere River during the nonth of May. By using a correction
factor of 3/2 the calculated nunber of walleyes taken during nine
census days in May was 168.
Further expansion of this to obtain a total nunber of
walleyes taken during the 21 days of May fron May 11 to 31 yields
a figure of:
21 x 163 = 392 walleyes
Then using the fornula, with x representing the spawning
18 = 392
Therefore x ■» 4 3 616 adult walleyes.
This figure should not be considered an absolutely
accurate estinate but should be of sone significance for conpara-
tive purposes in the future.
The fork and total lengths recorded for the tagged walleyes
will be of little significance until the scale sanples obtained
during the creel census have been read. It will then be possible
to determine weak year classes and attempt to correlate these with
adverse spawning conditions at Tranore. The tagging operation
afforded an excellent opportunity to exanine the general physical
condition of the fish. With the exception of one case of Lynphocystis,
the walleyes examined appeared to be practically free of disease and
external parasites and in excellent physical condition. Of the total
of 212 walleyes tagged, 47 were mature females and 165 were mature
males, producing a sex ratio of 1:3,5.
Walleye Distribution in Golden Lake
It was thought originally that a large proportion of the
adult walleyes in Golden Lake travelled upstream in the Bonnechere
River to the Tramore dam area for spawning. However, after closer
examination of the lake it is felt that only a small proportion of
the walleyes use this area. The many shoals existing in Golden Lake
together with the preponderance of small creeks entering the lake
would certainly indicate an abundance of sites for spawning purposes.
Fig. 1 illustrates the positions of capture of the 26
tagged walleyes taken in the lake proper. The distribution appears
to be quite random with the bulk of returns coming from the Black
Point area and the vicinity of the deep shoals near the centre of
the lake. It would appear that the phenomena of the return to the
original hatching site would be the major factor in dividing a
generally randomly distributed population into two distinct groups,
such as river run spawners and lake spawners.
Degree of Exploitation
With a return of 47 tags on a total of 212 tagged walleyes,
the resulting 21,2 per cent return seems quite high for a single
season. However, it must be considered that 21 of the 47 returns
were obtained from the Bonnechere River as the walleyes made their
way back to Golden Lake after spawning. Thus they were concentrated
in a constricted area which would no doubt result in considerable
bias when estimation of angling exploitation is concerned. Taking
this factor into consideration it would then seem that the tag
return is quite comparable with similar studies conducted in other
districts of the Province.
Discussion and Recommendations
From observations made in the past two years, the number
of adult walleye using the Tranore spawning bed seems to be
diminishing. This fact appears to be borne out by the rather low
estimate of 4,616 spawning fish made through the '63 tagging study.
Water records during recent years on the Bonnechere River are some-
what vague and hence not of too much use but it is known that for
the past two years conditions have been anything but ideal. It is
our opinion that spring flood conditions in the Bonnechere River
are a strong contributing cause to what could conceivably be the
gradual breakdown of the Tramore spawning population of walleyes.
Careful exanination of the river fron the dan to the Deacon bridge
on Golden Lake revealed no other spawning areas of significant
extent save the bed at Tramore.
This study would also indicate that the Tramore spasming
population does not contribute to the total walleye population of
Golden Lake to the extent that was originally considered. However,
this fact still remains to be proven, and further proof will no
doubt require 2 to 3 nore years. By this time the effects of the
past two inadequate spawning seasons may be manifested as an overall
drop in angling success in Golden Lake.
In view of the facts now known about Golden Lake walleyes,
the following recommendations for future management procedures can
1. A study to determine actual egg deposition and survival
rate on the Tramore dan spawning area is essential.
2. An effort to improve control of flood waters through the
manipulation of the Tramore dam should be set up with
the co-operation of the Renfrew Hydro Commission who
presently own and operate the dam. Various means of
accomplishing this objective should be discussed and
the most feasible method decided and acted upon.
3. Any further tagging studies, at least in the near
future should be confined to Golden Lake itself in an
effort to obtain a total population estimate for the
4. Every effort should be made to gain knowledge on the
walleye population in Golden Lake in order to form a
basis for a management plan that will maintain the
present high standard of angling in this, the most
important lake fron an econonic standpoint in the
5. It is also strongly recommended that rigid enforcenent
procedures be inplemented on the river itself during
the spawning run in order to curtail poaching activities
which are in evidence each year. This is a strong
point in any successful spawning run and should be
followed through as nuch as possible.
Houser, Alfred. 1951. Fish Population Estimates in Crystal
Lake, Cleveland County, Oklahoma. Reprod. from Proceed
ings of the Oklahoma Acad. Sci. Vol. 39:191-195.
Ryder, R. A. 1961. Lymphocystis as a Mortality Factor in
a Walleye Population. Progressive Fish Culturist, Vol.
Ryder, R. A. 1960. Comparative Tagging Returns Employing
Three Different Anaesthetics. Canadian Fish Culturist,
No. 26: 23-25, March.
SOME CURRENT FISHERIES PROBLEMS IN PATRICIA LAKES
AND RECOMMENDATIONS FOR FUTURE WORK OF THE INVENTORY
C. A. Lewis
It is apparent fron this study and others that many
of the lakes being fished connercially are not
approaching their quota and only about half of their
potential is being realized at present. It is suggest-
ed that the present 4-1/2'nesh (stretched measure) net
now used on most lakes in the Patricias nay be one
factor in preventing a nore efficient harvest. The
writer suggests that efforts be directed towards
determining what is the best commercial net for use
in northwestern Ontario. Recommendations for future
work and status of the project are also presented.
Before the Patricia Fisheries Inventory programme began
in 1959 under a joint Federal-Provincial agreement, little was known
of the commercial fishing potential and factors affecting it in the
135,000 square mile area of lake country under consideration.
Since 1959, a great deal of information has been collected on
conditions affecting lake productivity and on the fish populations
concerned. Establishment of quotas, methods of quickly determining
potential fish production of lakes, and growth studies of the
important commercial species involved, have come out of the study so
Problems of a more specific nature have also become
apparent. Some of these questions are raised and a general
approach to their solution is outlined below.
Many of the lakes now being fished commercially in the
Patricias are not approaching their quotas, over a period of time
(9). Annual commercial fish production from Sioux Lookout District
from 1959-63 has run from 2.2 million pounds (dressed) in 1961 to
2.9 nillion pounds in 1959, with an average for the five years of
2.7 million pounds (15). If these lakes were consistently produc-
ing to their recorded maximum, approximately 5 million pounds of
dressed commercial fish, excluding rough fish, could be realized.
- ■ '
■ ■ I' . .
This is very close to the total estimated production of 4.S million
pounds, arrived at by adding the quotas of all these lakes. In
addition, of an average of six years fishing on these lakes approxi-
mately 44 per cent have never reached their quota. This information
would further indicate that the potential of these lakes is only
partially realized at present.
Quotas on the harvest of commercial fish are relatively
meaningless unless they can be consistently realized. Many factors
affect the annual harvest of corxiercial fish from lakes in the
Patricias. Among these are: fluctuations in commercial demand,
cost of air travel, efficiency and reliability of Indian fishermen,
weather, spoilage, availability of the fish and governmental control
in the form of quotas and mesh size regulations.
It is suggested in the following paragraphs that the
present 4-1/2" mesh (stretched measure) now used on most lakes
in the Patricias may be one factor in preventing a greater and
more efficient harvest of walleye ( Stizostedion vitreum ) and
whitefish ( Cor eg onus clupeaformis ). If our quotas are to be
judged as realistic or not we oust provide, as far as our juris-
diction permits the most favorable conditions possible for the
harvest of these species consistent with the principle of sustained
The topic of optimum mesh sizes for commercial fish
operations is not a new subject. The need for knowledge of
minimum size limits for maximum yield is outlined by Ricker (11),
Herrington (3), and Nesbit (8). Work of this nature was done on
Lake of the Woods in 1950 and again in 1961 (1,2). In the latter
report by Greenberg it was recommended that a reduction from
4-1/2" mesh to 4-1/4" mesh be made for all areas of the Canadian
portion of the lake. It was also stated in Greenberg 1 s report
that in Minnesota waters of Lake of the Woods a 4" mesh has been
used for many years with no apparent harm to the whitefish or walleye
fishery (7). Kennedy (5), in discussing the optimum size of mesh
for gill nets in Lake Manitoba recommended 3"-3-3/4" as being most
advantageous. In northern Manitoba a 4-1/4" mesh is used on predo-
minantly walleye lakes, in lakes where both walleye and whitefish
are abundant or in lakes where the whitefish are stunted or highly
infested. A 5-1/4" mesh is used where whitefish and lake trout
are the main commercial species. Determination of these mesh sizes
in northern Manitoba lakes has been arrived at by trial and error,
are approximately correct and allow at least half the recruits to
mature and spawn for the first time before being selected by the fish-
ery (14). Manitoba eventually hopes to zone northern lakes where
more than one mesh size is allowed, and reduce mesh sizes in some
areas to more efficiently exploit stunted or early maturing stocks
of walleye and whitefish (14).
In the Patricias, we are using a 4-1/2" mesh which was
primarily designed for use in southern Ontario, where it is probably
most applicable. We are, in effect, applying a regulation based on
one ecological area to another area with vastly different conditions.
For example, Lake Ontario walleye mature at age III (male) and age
IV (female) and become vulnerable to the 4-1/2" mesh at age IV or
about 18.0 inches (fork length) and 2.8 pounds (16). Females are
being taken quite soon after reaching maturity. Earlier maturity
is possible, apparently when associated with faster growth. It
is predicted that Lake Erie walleyes from the 1962 year class will
mature a year sooner (13). This earlier maturity as a result of
faster growth was also indicated in the whitefish fishery of two
Present data from Patricia lakes indicate that walleye
spawn at about age VI or VII. This is in part a result of reduced
growth rates common in this northern area. Of four Patricia lakes
mentioned in table 1, all have 94 per cent or better of the walleye
age VIII or older in the 4" mesh . In North Caribou and the Nikip
lakes, 89 per cent or better are age VIII or older in the 3-1/2"
mesh. These data would suggest that we could harvest walleye at an
earlier age, allowing at least one half to mature and spawn once
before becoming vulnerable to the fishery.
Present evidence suggests that only a small spawning
stock is required to produce a strong year class. This was true in
Lake Winnipegosis (14), Tathlina Lake (4) and possibly true in the
strong expected return of the Lake Erie walleye fishery. In Lake
Erie it is expected that there will be an approximate four-fold
increase in the landed walleye catch in 1964 over 1961, due to the
strong 1962 year class (13). There are indications in the literature
that environmental conditions rather than numbers of mature adults
determine the success or failure of year class strength.
In all Patricia lakes in table 1 the average size of
walleye in the 3-1/2" mesh is more than 16 inches (total length)
and 1.5 pounds in weight (round). This weight is about the mini-
mum acceptable size, commercially.
That the 4-1/2" mesh currently in use is not efficient
is graphically demonstrated in Figure I, showing catch per unit of
effort (C.U.E.) figures for walleye from six large lakes over a
total of nine years. In all cases the maximum C.U.E. is in the 3"
mesh or less. The efficiency of the 4-1/2" mesh is extremely low.
It would appear then, that sone of our future efforts
should be directed at determining what is the best commercial net
to be used in this area of northwestern Ontario. The data presented
here have been directed at walleye, but information should also be
collected and interpreted for whitefish as well.
"Critical size" as defined by Ricker (11), is the point
at which natural mortality outweighs increase in growth and it is
here that the weight of the fish population is greatest and can
be most efficiently harvested,, It is this size, applicable to
Patricia lakes, with due regard for information on age at maturity,
and fecundity that some of our future management work should be
Table 1 -
Average Length, Weighl
i of Walle;
VTII and Older in
4-l/2 c '
% Age VIII or
% Age VIII or
% Age VIII or
% Age VIII or
% Age VIII or
* Data from Indian Commercial Fishery.
1. A three year study on at least one Patricia lake
somewhat along the lines outlined by Ricker (12) would give us
valuable insight into the problem outlined above. This would be
particularly useful when done in connection with the collection of
commercial fishery information from existing 4-1/2" mesh fisheries,
and at least two fisheries using 4" nesh on an experimental basis.*
This proposed study would annually cost about the same as any one
of the present lake surveys and should not be done at Big Trout Lake
as it is not a typical whitef ish- walleye lake in this area,
2. That funds be provided for a "mobile crew c: who
would spend a short period of time at selected commercial fisheries
in the north gathering commercial fish data. If this crew were
outfitted with a sounder they could also sound any lake on which
a major lake survey is to be done the following year. This could
reduce the major lake surveys to one year instead of the present
3. That more emphasis be given to recommendations for
management on specific lakes after a survey has been completed.
Something along the nature of an individual lake survey report would
be desirable. Material on the area as a whole is fairly substantial
now and we can start to be more specific in our approach and re-
commendations. We are doing this with Wunnummin Lake as a start.
4. That major lake surveys be continued at the
rate of at least one per year.
5. Continuation of measures to improve quality
should be encouraged.
6. That the Bug River cabin at Big Trout Lake be
closed unless research or some other group wish to continue, and
have funds to do so. It is important that data from the Big Trout
commercial fishery continue to be collected to follow the effects of
the 5-1/2" mesh size regulation. About two weeks in August by the
"mobile crew" would suffice.
7. That funds continue to be made available for the use
of two casual employees to work up data in the winter.
* At least one lake, (Makoop) will use a 4" mesh in 1964.
1. Elsey, C. A. 1950. Determination of Optimum Gill Net Sizes in
Ontario Waters of the Lake of the Woods. Unpublished,
Kenora District Field Report.
2. Greenberg, A. 1961. Lake of the Woods Pickerel Survey. Unpublished,
Kenora District Field Report.
3. Herrington, William C. 1944. Some Methods of Fishery Management
and Their Usefulness in a Management Programme. U. S.
Fish and Wildlife Service, Special Scientific Report,
18: 3-22, 54-53 (mineo.).
4. Kennedy, W. A. 1947. Some Information on the Minimum Adult
Stock of Fish Needed to Provide Adequate Natural
Spawning. Can. Fish Cult., Vol. 1, No. 2, pp. 14-15.
5. Kennedy, W. A. 1949, The Determination of Optimum Size of Mesh for
Gill Nets in Lake Manitoba. Trans. Amer. Fish. Soc,
Vol. 79, pp. 167-179.
6. Miller, R. B. 1947. The Effects of Different Intensities of
Fishing on the Whitefish Population of Two Alberta Lakes.
The Joum. of Wildl. Mgt., Vol. 11, No. 4, pp. 239-301.
7. Minnesota Dept. of Conservation, 1942. An Investigation of Lake
of the Woods, Minnesota, with Particular Reference to the
Commercial Fisheries. Minn. Dept. Conservation Bureau of
Fish Research. Invest. Report No. 42, pp. 1-16 (Mimeo.).
8 # Nesbit, Robert A, 1944. Biological and Economic Problems of
Fishery Management. U. 3. Fish & Wildlife Serv., Spec.
Scientific Report, 10:23-53, 59-66 (Mimeo.).
9, Ryder, R, A, 1963, Chemical Determinations of Ontario Lakes With
Special Reference to a Method for Estimating Potential
Fish Production. Ont. Dept. of Lands & Forests, Res.
Branch, Maple, Ontario, pp. 1-46, to be published soon.
10, Ryder, R, A t , A. E. Armstrong, and J. J. Armstrong. Preliminary
Report of the Fisheries Inventory Work in the Patricias,
1959-60, Dept. of Lands and Forests, Unpublished Report.
Hi Ricker, William E. 1945. A Method of Estimating Minimum Size
Limits for Obtaining Maximum Yield. Copeia, No. 2,
12. Ricker, Willian E. 1945. Abundance, Exploitation and Mortality of
the Fishes in Two Lakes. Invest. Ind. Lakes and Streams,
2(17), Vol. 2, pp. 345-448.
13. Sports Fishing Institute Bulletin. No. 147, February, 1964.
14. Sunde, Leif, 1964. Personal Corxjunication. The Pas, Man,
15. Sioux Lookout District Annual Reports. 1959-1963. Ontario Dept.
of Lands & Forests, Sioux Lookout, Ontario.
16. Watson, Mels. 1964. Personal Connunication. Ontario Dept. of Lands
and Forests, Glenora, Ontario.
a\ cor-»\£> m<fCOCMr-<